Blue Mountains News
Buspa Drives Daily Devotions
So renowned tourism forefather John Cronshaw (affectionately known as "Buspa") did what he had done for thousands of tourists on holiday: he bundled them up into manageable packages ready for consumption at leisure.
The Fantastic Aussie Tours and Blue Mountains Explorer Bus founder and Anglican Church lay preacher has so far published three books and a CD, with more tomes in the pipeline.
The first book, Coached by God: The Successful Christian (2015), began as an attempt to reconcile the conflict within himself between ambition to steer a successful business and humanist philosophy which places all power to change on the individual, and conservative Christianity which defers to God alone and a desire to live a godly Christian life.
"I was talking about this on a tour once when one of the guests said: 'Rather than trying to pull these opposing truths together, it’s like a violin string – you have to anchor it and tighten it, and when you get the right tension you make beautiful music'," he said.
Coached by God is a product of two decades of writing, peppered with experiences from Mr Cronshaw’s own life.
His second book, Buspa’s Corner: Thoughts for the journey of life, was published in 2017 and follows the Moving Devotions with Buspa CD of 2006.
Both stem from the daily devotions given during Christian Fellowship Tours trips for the Anglican-run Bush Church Aid Society (BCA), which he instigated in 1978 to support remote and rural churches in Australia, and articles written for BCA’s The Real Australian magazine and the Mother’s Union magazine Mia Mia.
"When we go on tours we have a little devotion each morning, so I started putting some of them together, a bit ad hoc, a bit rough, but next thing you know people are relating to it and being encouraged by it.
"They are practical, easy-to-read, down to earth things."
The last book, Land of the Bible (2017) was published as an accompaniment to the Land of the Bible tour through Jordan and Israel operated by Christian Fellowship Tours.
Every traveller on the tour receives a manual with information on each location and activity, a link to relevant Bible verses and a short devotion: "One verse, one thought. It’s not a full blown sermon – you’re on holidays."
Mr Cronshaw, who now lives at Bonny Hills near Port Macquarie with wife Nancie, has been a driving force of the tourism industry in the Greater Blue Mountains since 1968.
A director of the largest tourist vehicle operation in country NSW and the longest continuous day tour operator in NSW, Mr Cronshaw was accepted into the National Transport Hall of Fame in Alice Springs in 2010.
His tour company now includes Fantastic Aussie Tours (FAT), the red double-decker Blue Mountains Explorer Bus fleet and Christian Fellowship Tours.
The business is the longest running coach operation in NSW and second oldest continuous family-owned tourism business in the Blue Mountains.
Katoomba-based FAT last year became the first certified 100 per cent carbon neutral bus charter transport service in Australia under the Federal Government’s Carbon Neutral Program.
Blue Mountains Explorer Bus was the first tourism operator/transport service in the country to be certified, and FAT and Explorer Bus were the first in the country to operate a certified carbon neutral bus and coach fleet.
While the day-to-day operations of the company are now managed by son Jason, Mr Cronshaw continues to lead tour groups around the world, with trips to Vanuatu, Kenya and the Holy Land scheduled this year.
He does not aim to proselytise but equip likeminded travellers with the resources to, as American idealist Sargent Shriver once said, "travel with a purpose" on a spiritually enriching journey.
Coached By God, Land of the Bible and Buspa’s Corner ($20 each) are available in the Blue Mountains Explorer Bus shop at Katoomba railway station and can be ordered through the Koorong Bookshop in Penrith.
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